Exclusive: Whelan wowed by Leeds speed machine after U23s display - 'A great talent'
Noel Whelan heaped praise on Leeds United attacker Raphinha after he starred for the club’s under-23s against Norwich yesterday.
The former Whites and Coventry striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, hailed the 23-year-old’s “fantastic performance” and said that he is proving to be a “really good signing”.
Raphinha scored for Leeds’ under-23s in a 2-0 victory against Norwich at Thorp Arch.
The winger is yet to make his full debut for Marcelo Bielsa’s side, but has featured twice as a substitute since his £17million move from Rennes earlier this month.
Whelan was blown away by what he saw from the Brazilian on Sunday and tipped him to pressure Helder Costa and Jack Harrison for a regular starting spot in the first team.
“A fantastic performance and Raphinha was on fire,” he told Football Insider.
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“From what we have seen of him so far, he looks a really good signing.
“He is quick, direct and good with both feet. He is a player that can open up defences and has an eye for goal. That is definitely the sort of player that Marcelo Bielsa likes and it is great that he can play on either side.
“A great talent and every time he has come on for the first team he has added something. He has bags of pace and is a danger going forward.
“What I like is that he can also do the horrible side, that is exactly what is required in a Marcelo Bielsa side.
“He is definitely going to put pressure on Helder Costa and Jack Harrison to perform week in, week out and if we need to change a game then he is going to be our goto man.”
In other Leeds United news, Darren Bent tips ‘superb’ youngster for big new role after sighting.